Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Vision Partially Restored In Blind Mice

Date:
April 29, 2008
Source:
Dalhousie University
Summary:
The idea of going blind is a frightening thought for anyone. Recent work to restore visual function during retinal degenerative diseases resulting in complete loss of photoreceptors that enable vision, has created hope that retinal diseases leading to blindness may one day be reversed.

The idea of going blind is a frightening thought for anyone. Recent work to restore visual function during retinal degenerative diseases resulting in complete loss of photoreceptors that enable vision, has created hope that retinal diseases leading to blindness may one day be reversed.

Related Articles


Dalhousie Neuroscience Professor Dr. Gautam Awatramani and colleagues have recently restored visual functions in mice in a lab in Switzerland. Dr. Awatramani and his colleagues triggered vision in diseased retina with light and now their work has been published in the journal Nature Neuroscience. The researchers successfully restored visual functions in mice with retinal degeneration disease, and while not as good as normal mice, the blind mice responded to light whereas before treatment, they didn’t.

“It was an international collaborative effort between scientists with a range of expertise,” says Awatramani. Using the novel, light activated molecule, channelrhodopsin, found in green algae, they were able to restore the mice’s sight. “We were able to target cells in the retina originally downstream of the photoreceptors. Once we expressed channelrhodopsin in bipolar cells the mice responded to light, albeit, their visual acuity was not as good as mice with normal vision,” says Awatramani. “It’s the first time a rescue of visual function with this strategy has occurred,” he adds.

Retinal degeneration is the leading cause of blindness and the research could have human benefits. “Restoration of vision with prosthetic devices is an emerging biotechnological niche with great potential,” says Dr. Steven Barnes, director of the Dalhousie Neuroscience Institute. “This advance holds real promise for restoring vision to people whose photoreceptors have degenerated,” adds Dr. John Dowling, professor of Neuroscience at Harvard.

Dr. Awatramani will continue retinal research at Dalhousie’s Retina and Optic Nerve Research Laboratory and will collaborate with Dr. Botond Roska in Switzerland. Current work targets the retinal circuits that are activated during increases of light. The next steps, he says, are to target the cells involved in dimming circuits in attempts to restore full vision. Clinical trials on humans will take place in Paris with the hope of restoring visual function in cases of human retinal degeneration.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Dalhousie University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Dalhousie University. "Vision Partially Restored In Blind Mice." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 April 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080428141242.htm>.
Dalhousie University. (2008, April 29). Vision Partially Restored In Blind Mice. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 27, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080428141242.htm
Dalhousie University. "Vision Partially Restored In Blind Mice." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080428141242.htm (accessed March 27, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, March 27, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

These Popular Antibiotics Can Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

These Popular Antibiotics Can Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

Newsy (Mar. 27, 2015) — A popular class of antibiotic can leave patients in severe pain and even result in permanent nerve damage. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
House Ready to Pass Medicare Doc Bill

House Ready to Pass Medicare Doc Bill

AP (Mar. 26, 2015) — In rare bipartisan harmony, congressional leaders pushed a $214 billion bill permanently blocking physician Medicare cuts toward House passage Thursday, moving lawmakers closer to resolving a problem that has plagued them for years. (March 26) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
What's Different About This Latest Ebola Vaccine

What's Different About This Latest Ebola Vaccine

Newsy (Mar. 26, 2015) — A whole virus Ebola vaccine has been shown to protect monkeys exposed to the virus. Here&apos;s what&apos;s different about this vaccine. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
HIV Outbreak Prompts Public Health Emergency In Indiana

HIV Outbreak Prompts Public Health Emergency In Indiana

Newsy (Mar. 26, 2015) — Indiana Gov. Mike Pence says he will bring additional state resources to help stop the epidemic. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins